The freeze takes its toll

5th January 2011 –overcast/rain at times S3
Grounded Migrants
A small Blackbird influx was noted and both Grey Wagtail and Coal Tit were unusual at this time of the year.
Wildfowl and Waders
A total of 115 pale-bellied Brent Geese were logged and a flock of 40 Pintail were seen along with 6 Shoveler.
Raptors were again to the fore with Hen Harrier, Common Buzzard, Peregrine, Merlin, Sparrowhawk and Kestrel all seen. The itinerant flock of Twite held 80 birds and 3 Little Egret were along the eastern shore.

Perhaps predictably 2 Winter Moths were the first sightings of the year

Recent casualties of the freeze included 3 Woodcock and a Grey Heron while the island’s wintering Stonechat population appears to have been wiped out with a search of all the usual haunts failing to locate a single bird.

If visiting the island please try to avoid disturbance to roosting and feeding birds, the recent severe weather had a very noticeable affect, especially amongst wildfowl and waders which were beginning to struggle and although the recent thaw saw an easing of conditions some species are still struggling to survive.